Sept. 4-7, 2015
by Tisha & Philip Matticks
Well, we all survived the scorching heat wave this Labor Day Weekend had to bring.
We had several people join us from newbies to veteran paddlers. The first night some of us decided to camp at the sandbar under the bridge. The water level continued to go down. No water being added. Some of us drove our vehicles down to the campsite to unload our gear easier. Most of us did make the trip there and back, unfortunately, one vehicle did get stuck in the soft sand. But fortunately, there were Good Samaritans that assisted in getting that truck back on the hill. It was a struggle, it was hot, some of us got bit by mosquitos….we all pulled together and got the job done!
Danny arrived early and was ready to do his shuttle at 8:30 AM. The drivers followed the shuttle to the designated parking lot and the shuttled back to the bridge. That is about a 45 minute round trip….By the time they all returned, out boat was out of the water, the river went down even more!
Well, everyone came back, unfortunately, one person in our group missed the first shuttle. Therefore, we had to wait another 45 minutes. As I mentioned to the others, the 45 minutes will pass, regardless where we are. We have to be somewhere, so Philip & I waited for the last person to arrive to assure that persons safety….glad the rest decided to wait as well as a group! We’re on Holiday!
It was humid, making it hot, but with the light clouds, it was not as hot as other Labor Day Weekends.
On the way to our campsite, we saw this dog barking and barking from beneath a cliff along the river bank. A man sat on top taking video of this wild boar. The dog was barking at it, then came these two other dogs and two other men, one of them was a pit-bull (the dog that is). They got very aggressive in capturing this pig. The dogs began to fight and wrestle this pig. Not a pretty sight to see if you don’t hunt!
Like I told the others; “I like sausage, ham, pork…but I don’t need to see how it’s slaughtered.”
We arrived to our campsite…..some had group meals, Philip & I had fried oyster sliders. And later made a campfire circle……Must view the picture Quan took of the campfire. Just beautiful!
More fog this morning compared to Saturday morning. Very hot, no clouds. Lots of low areas.
We all had our early breakfast and started to head out about 9:30 AM. At this time, we were trying to keep cool with the humidity just sweltering us. Many, Many, Many River Cool Off Breaks!
Before we arrived to our campsites, it began to rain slightly, then a little heavier, then the wind came.
Some of us pulled over under trees….It stopped, we started to paddle once again, and the sun came out!
We made it to our campsites; it was nice, some of us pitched our tents first, some did not and the rain
came down again….hard rain. I forgot my rain gear so I sat in the warm river water since we had no
lightning. Thunder in the distance, but how chilled one can get with the rain water after such a hot day.
Folks! Don’t forget to take your rain gear, if for any reason, to just stay warm and as dry as possible.
The rain stopped and those that needed to pitch their tents did and most of us started our evening meals.
Philip & I had shrimp with cocktail sauce for an appetizer. Then we had beef tips over wild rice.
We met Jason and his dog Shooter; Even Shooter wore a PDF. Anyway, he made his round to introduce
himself and his dog. Ron was there with his two grandsons (Ian & Duncan) and they started a campfire.
David approached to help out with the campfire-David likes campfires! Unfortunately, it started to
sprinkle again. No heavy rain, just enough to get wet or cool down the day. Well, most of us went inside
our tents. In all honesty……I believe we were just exhausted and could all use the rest!
Well, it did not stop a college class reunion group; they played music, sang, and fireworks kept going off
until almost midnight. They even had some fireworks left over to finish off on Monday morning. They
were cool and loud. The River is for everyone to enjoy!
We made it! We had Danny’s assistance help us out by carrying our gear up to the vehicles. They work by
providing a gratuity tip…..Gladly, Gladly pay it, they are worth every penny and then some!
Once we loaded back up; some of us met at the Whataburger in Jasper for a well deserve hot meal and
Once again, Philip & I always thank those that participate in our trips. A group the size we had (25
Paddlers), can only be as good as the company we keep. And what great company we kept this weekend.
We hooked up with old friends and made some new ones.
We personally would like to thank so many paddlers that came from Missouri City, Pasadena, Houston,
Katy, Cypress, Conroe, Shepherd and even Tyler; Sandy & David, Milton, Bob, Ron & Duncan & Ian,
Mitch, Christina, Cathy, Craig & Margarita, Judy, Charles, Brian, Denisa, Jose’, Morgan, Mike, Dallas,
Jesus, Michael, & Quan for making this another memorable one for the books!
“Remember, Think Safe-Paddle Safe”
Philip & Tisha Matticks
|The authors, Tisha & Philip Matticks